Difficulty breathing through your nose can be caused by nasal polyp obstruction.
These frequent signs and symptoms are often associated with chronic sinusitis, but they may also result from nasal polyps: (2)
- A runny nose
- Sneezing or snorting
- Postnasal drip
- Decreased sense of smell
- Persistent stuffiness
- Mouth breathing
- A sense of pressure over your forehead and face
- Facial pain or headache
- Loss of sense of taste
- Itching around your eyes
- Snoring and sleep apnea
What About Nasal Polyps? Could That Be My Problem?
Nasal polyps are soft, noncancerous growths of the tissues that line your nose and sinuses. They hang down like teardrops or grapes and are painless. Small nasal polyps may not cause symptoms or need treatment. Larger growths or groups of nasal polyps can block your nasal passages, prevent normal drainage, and lead to breathing problems, a lost sense of smell and frequent infections.
Exactly what causes some people and not others to develop nasal polyps is unclear. Some people develop polyps with no previous nasal problems, but there is often a trigger that leads to polyp formation. Polyp growth can be triggered by chronic sinus and nasal inflammation resulting from things like asthma, certain allergies, recurring sinus infections, drug sensitivity and certain immune disorders.
Making the Diagnosis, Selecting the Treatment (1)
Because nasal polyp symptoms are similar to other issues in the nasal and sinus passages, an accurate diagnosis is necessary to know how to proceed. Polyps may be visible using a simple lighted instrument called an otoscope or nasoscope. If they are located deeper in your sinuses, your doctor may need to use nasal endoscopy that has a light and camera. A CT scan can also be an asset in making the correct diagnosis by showing the size and location of deeper polyps. Bella Vista ENT has the state-of-the-art equipment to perform each of these procedures right in our office.
What Should I Do?
Medications can often shrink or eliminate nasal polyps, but If your symptoms don’t improve, nasal surgery can remove the polyps completely. The type of surgical procedure depends on the size and location of the polyps determined during your visit to our office.
The best way to identify the cause of the problems contributing to your nasal obstruction is to see one or our Board Certified Ear Nose & Throat specialists to determine why airflow is reduced or completely blocked.